It can feel frustrating when you want to become a legal permanent resident (LPR) of America, but you encounter pitfalls when filing an application with USCIS. USCIS is the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service, and it receives thousands of LPR petitions yearly from those who want to live and work in America.
A lawful permanent resident is a person who is not a United States citizen but who legally resides in the U.S. under officially recorded green card status. Even the savviest applicant can encounter obstacles to obtaining LPR status in America.
1. Timeline for Obtaining LPR Status
One obstacle in the process of getting a green card in America is time. After spending many hours gathering evidence and identification documents, as well as supplying information for forms to an immigration attorney, the only task remains for the near future is waiting.
USCIS does have some tools that better allow a potential beneficiary to be updated about their LPR petition. Some measures that may be taken to attempt to expedite the process include the following:
2. Request for Evidence (RFE) in Support of an U.S. LPR Petition
Another roadblock to getting an LPR card in America is the dreaded Request for Evidence (RFE). An RFE will be mailed back to the applicant if more evidence will be necessary before the adjudicator can issue a good-faith approval of a green card.
RFEs can be issued at any stage in the LPR process, from the initial filing forward. USCIS will provide a deadline date for submitting the proof documents asked for, and the RFE letter must accompany that newer evidence.
3. Notice of Intent to Deny (NOID) An LPR Application in America
Although a Notice of Intent to Deny (NOID) is indeed an obstacle to garnering a green card in America, it is not the final decision. A NOID is better defined as a warning that USCIS may not grant the petition unless they are sent more evidence or receive clarifying information.
Noncitizens who receive a NOID still have a chance to get their green card. It is not a great feeling to receive such a letter, but it is not the final step.
4. Statutory Denial
In 2018 USCIS released guidance in a Policy Memorandum that clarified the allowable decision-making capabilities of adjudicators regarding LPR status. This document declared that adjudicators are allowed to issue a statutory denial of a green card application, even if they had not first issued an RFE or NOID.
Clearly, this is the one of the largest roadblocks in the way of achieving legal permanent resident status in America. However, it is not the end of the road.
If a denial does result from an attempt to gain LPR status in America, there are methods to appeal certain decisions. For example,tThe applicant may file an appeal with the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO).
Appealing to the AAO requires another form, the I-290B and more filing fees. This can be an obstacle in itself. Moreover, there is no guarantee that the AAO will see it your way and approve your green card petition.
See a U.S. Immigration Lawyer About Obtaining LPR Status
A U.S. green card lawyer can provide helpful support when you encounter obstacles to obtaining LPR status in America. Some have experience with the pitfalls that others have encountered, and they may be able to help you to avoid them. Call a lawful permanent residency attorney to discuss your case.